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Golf is a fickle game, especially at the PGA Tour level. One bad hole over the course of a four-day tournament can be the difference between a mediocre finish and a life-changing payday, and PGA Tour rookie Taylor Montgomery learned that the hard way at the Players Championship.

After surging up the leaderboard on Saturday and Sunday to get himself into the top five, Montgomery went 7 over par on holes 15-17 in the final round to plummet from T4 to T44. The 28-year-old would’ve banked a career-best $1.3 million if he simply parred the final four holes of the Players Championship, the most lucrative event on the PGA Tour schedule this year.

Instead, Montgomery watched $1.2 million slip through his fingers in one tormenting hour at TPC Sawgrass.

Taylor Montgomery melted down late in the Players Championship

Taylor Montgomery is a talented rookie with a bright future ahead of him, but he hadn’t yet recorded a signature finish in a big event. That looked as if it was about to change at the Players Championship over the weekend.

Montgomery, who made the cut at 1 under par, vaulted up the leaderboard with a 6-under 66 in the third round. He kept the momentum rolling in Round 4 by going 3 under in his first 14 holes on Sunday. Suddenly, the rookie found himself tied for fourth on the leaderboard.

That didn’t last very long, though, as Montgomery bogeyed the par-4 15th hole after an errant drive into the trees. He followed that up with a double bogey on the par-5 16th hole, but the worst was still yet to come.

On the iconic par-3 17th hole, Montgomery hit his tee shot over the green and in the water. He dropped on the walkway and proceeded to hit his chip past the pin and in the water on the other side of the green. Three shots later, he walked off the island green with a quadruple bogey.

In the three-hole stretch that took him just about an hour to play, Montgomery went 7 over par and dropped from T4 on the leaderboard to T44. He went on to par his final hole of the tournament to finish in a tie for 44th.

Taylor Montgomery lost $1.2 million in 1 tormenting hour

Taylor Montgomery plays a shot during the Players Championship.
Taylor Montgomery plays his second shot on the 10th hole during the final round of The Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass | David Cannon/Getty Images

Montgomery didn’t just lose a ton of FedEx Cup points by dropping 38 spots on the leaderboard Sunday afternoon. He also lost a ton of tough.

If Montgomery had gone even par over his last four holes of the Players Championship, he would’ve finished in a three-way tie for third place at 10 under par. That would’ve given him a massive payday of $1,325,000.

Instead, his nightmare three-hole stretch dropped him down to T44, which came with a payout of just $75,035. Montgomery’s late meltdown ended up costing him more than $1.2 million, and it all slipped away over the course of one hour.

Pour one out for Taylor Montgomery today.


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